What is Novello?
Novello is an extremely young wine, a sort of younger brother to the better known and more extensively produced French Beaujolais nouveau. Though Beaujolais nouveau (and its non “new” counterpart just plain Beaujolais) are made entirely of one grape variety called Gamay and undergo stricter production processes, where Novello wines vary quite a bit in terms of grapes and production details (=hand-picked versus mechanical harvesting, etc).
Novello wines are released throughout November and December, a very fresh product of that year’s harvest. You can find them made from a number of grapes and blends of grapes, like Sangiovese, Primitivo, Barbera, Dolcetto, Teroldego, and numerous other black grape varieties. The leading region in Novello production is the northern region of Veneto. They tend to be light and fruity, and also relatively inexpensive. They do admittedly vary in quality…not all of them are the best wines you’ll ever drink. BUT they are a nice way to get into the winter spirit, transitioning from lighter warm-weather-friendly wines to bolder, heavier, wintery reds!